Charlottesville prosecutors are investigating Organizing for America’s role in helping Virginians register to vote but then failing to turn in their applications on time.
Applications needed to be turned in within 15 days of being signed or before the registration period ended for the March 6 presidential primary.
All 147 applications in question came from Organizing for America, an arm of the Democratic National Committee that supports President Obama’s policies and reelection campaign , Charlottesville registrar Sheri Iachetta said in an interview. She said they arrived after the Feb. 13 deadline.
Iachetta said she referred the case to prosecutors.
The Charlottesville commonwealth’s attorney’s office declined to comment beyond acknowledging an active investigation. But Albemarle County Commonwealth’s Attorney Denise Y. Lunsford said her office decided not to pursue a case because she said the delay was not “intentional.”
The applications, signed Feb. 1, 2 and 3, were hand-delivered Feb. 21, she said.
Of the 147 applications, 78 were from Charlottesville residents. The others came from across the state, and Iachetta sent them to their local registrars. Fewer than 40 came from Albemarle County residents, she said.
Under Virginia law, failure to mail or deliver signed voter registration applications to the registrar in a timely manner is a misdemeanor.
Iachetta praised third-party groups such as Organizing for America for trying to register people to vote, but said they have to be more careful.
Spokesmen for the Obama campaign, Organizing for America and the DNC declined to comment.